Additional Resources

The College Solution
Lynn O'Shaughnessy knows a lot about paying for college. I would call her a "guru" because I learned so much from her and rely on her insights. She has a blog, and she puts out a newsletter. If you are a parent thinking about paying for college -- and if you are a parent, I hope you are thinking about paying for college -- I hope you will take a look and sign up for her newsletter.

The College Affordability Guide provides a list of the most affordable colleges by state and degree program.

How America Pays For College 2016  | Sallie Mae
This annual report looks at undergraduate families' attitudes toward college, how much they spent, and the sources they used to pay for it.”

Tax Tips to Make College More Affordable | NYTimes
With income tax season well underway, college students and their families should brush up on available tax benefits that can help lower their education costs.

UI Launches iGrad Financial Wellness System - March 04, 2016
Here is a really important financial literacy tool for UI students!

The University of Idaho has recently added the iGrad Financial Wellness Platform to our library of student resources as part of the Better Education About Money for Students (BEAMS) program. In recent years, the need for increased personal finance education and the impact of implementing a campus wide program have been well documented. Not only will our students benefit personally from this enhanced education, our institution will see a positive impact as well. 

All About WUE (Western Undergraduate Exchange)
The Western Undergraduate Exchange (WUE) is a reciprocity program that allows students in participating western states (including Idaho and Washington) to attend schools in neighbor states for 150% tuition. WUE offers some great opportunities for keeping college affordable.    But there are some things to keep in mind.  First, not every school in every participating state offers the tuition break.  In California most UC Schools do not participate, but most CSU schools do.  UW is not a WUE school, neither is CU in Boulder, Colorado.  And for those schools that do participte, some limit WUE participation to certain majors or to applicants with certain minimum test scores and/or high school GPA.  Here is a list of all participating WUE schools .  Click on the school link to find out if there are any limits or requirements to participate (and to see what kind of tuition discount you can receive).  

Questbridge is an organization that helps academincally talented low income students find their way to college. One program they offer is the College Prep Scholar program for high school juniors. It's designed to help them learn more about great colleges (and visit them) and prepare for colleges admissions. If you are SOPHOMORE and this sounds like where you might be income and acheivement-wise, make a note to yourself to apply at the beginning of 2017!!!

Too poor to pay for college, too rich for financial aid
While colleges advertise their "sticker price," many families expect to receive need-based financial aid in the form of grants and student loans. The amount they are awarded is based on what the college estimates they can afford and is supposed to help fill in the gap. But some middle and upper-middle class families find that what the college expects them to contribute is more than what they can afford.”

At Small Colleges, Harsh Lessons About Cash Flow
There are many small great colleges struggling to survive. Part of this is about attracting applicants, but another part is about having the resources to offer aid to support them. 

Can Parents Measure The ROI Of College Tuition?
If you “invest” $120,000 in your child’s education, what will you get back? Just as we can’t know for sure how our kids will turn out as a result of our parenting, so we also can’t really know how their college experience will aid them once they are graduates.”

Succeed Academically, Graduate on Time / Power of Liberal Arts
80% of graduates finished within four years at smaller private colleges, compared to 52% at larger public universities and 34% at regional public universities.”

When you think about the cost of college make sure you think about how long it will take to get through. Private liberal arts colleges have much higher four year graduation rates than many public schools. If it takes five years rather than four to complete school, then you need to add another year of tuition and incidental expenses and also the money your student would have earned with full time work when comparing costs. Alternatively, you need a good plan for navigating your public university in four years -- it certainly can be done, but it takes planning.  -

2 Extra Years in College Could Cost Nearly $300,000 | NerdWallet
Only 40% of college students receive a bachelor’s degree in four years, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. Within six years, 60% of bachelor’s degree seekers will receive a diploma. A low graduation rate may reflect structural barriers to completion, like difficulty getting classes needed to fulfill degree requirements. And there is something to be said about school culture. At some schools NO ONE stayed in school beyond for years. It isn't an option to consider. That really shapes behavior. In contrast, when most classmates take more than four years, students are more likely to be influenced by their peers. 

7 Tips to Graduate from College in 4 Years | MyMajors Blog

Keep Calm and Make Sure You Can Afford It
Before you submit your college applications and do some checking to make sure the schools on your final list are a financial fit for your family.  Because all colleges are not created equal when it comes to financial aid and merit scholarships.  To read more visit the Palouse Pathways blog.”

8 colleges That Just Launched Big Tuition Discount Programs
Out-of-control tuition costs are part of the reason behind a decline in enrollment at many colleges. In response, some schools are trying to boost their numbers by creating attractive deals to a wide range of students.”

Part-Time Jobs That Offer College Benefits
Picking the right part-time position in your college years could provide you with more than just work experience — it can lead you to lower college debt, too. Here are eight great part-time gigs to check out that offer college benefits.”

Northwest University Takes Aim at Student Loan Debt
Some schools have made a commitment to help their students graduate without debt. Northwestern in Illinois is another one making that commitment. It's good news, but the problem is that these schools are really selective so this won't provide relief for everyone. However, if you're a great low-income student, and you aspire to attend a selective college, work hard to prepare for your standardized tests so you will have a shot at a great debt-free education